Many myths surround the explosion of punk in Manchester and its repercussions. The central fable being of how a city was re-born by the seminal act of one gig and one band attended by many of the people who would go on to play a major part in the transformation of the city from post-industrial wasteland into multi-cultural hub.
Martin Ryan caught the punk bug in 1976 just like everybody else, it's just that his memory is not clouded by apocrypha. He was there, or not there, and can recall dates, times, gigs and the growth of the nascent Manchester scene. He and Mick Middles even put a lot of it down in print in Ghast Up, one of a rash of fanzines to emerge in punk's wake.
Concentrating on the years 1976, 1977 and 1978 Friends of Mine is a blow by blow account of how punk really happened in Manchester. A much needed corrective.